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Monday Mobility – Side to Side Bridge

It’s been a few weeks since I gave you a “Monday Mobility” post, for that I apologise.

So here is a great drill I like to use, especially with my lunchtime fitness crew. It’s a drill taken from JiuJitsu and restructured slightly to change its emphasis. In BJJ the movement is used to throw a person off that’s sitting on top of you, as a mobility drill we are looking to increase thoracic extension and rotation with increased hip extension and glute activation.

Why do I like this with the lunchtime crew? Well, they’ve all just left their desks, come into me and have a very tight window of opportunity to get as much good work done as possible. So a drill like this one that directly contradicts that desk posture while activating important muscles and moving the body around a bit makes for a great warm up choice.

For you BJJ and wrestling guys, take a look at the variations I espouse here. You will see:

  1. I push through the heels rather than the toes. Evidence has been published to show that pressing through the heel has a greater effect on activating the posterior chain (Glutes/Hammies), whereas pushing through the ball of the foot is more anterior dominant (quads). So I go with the evidence and try to get as much glute activation as possible by pushing the ground away with my heels.

  2. I don’t start to rotate until I am maximally extended. In a fight a quick bump with an equally quick turn is needed to throw the guy off before he has time to respond and adjust, fair enough. But here I am warming up and aiming to increase my ROM. Very often I see BJJ guys who have terrible hip extension, maybe it’s a combination of office/desk bound work with a flexion emphasis sport. Net result is a bridge that comes from overarching the low back rather than hyperextending the hip. Emphasis the hip extension here while maintaining a slight amount of tension in the abdominals to ensure the low back stays neutral and instead the extension happens in the upper back and the hip.

  3. Reach the hand as far as possible, aiming to reach a fraction further on each rep. Reach out to the corners of the room, kind of aiming along the North West & North East lines assuming your spine is aligned along the North-South line. You should feel like you are about to fall over onto your face if you do this right.

  4. Count it in a 4 count. 1 – Lift the hip 2 – Reach the arm 3 – Retract the Arm 4 – Lower the hip. This will ensure that quality is maintained.

Enough chatter, here’s a video: [youtube=] Enjoy

Dave Hedges

Upcoming Workshops:

Kettlebell Lifting Levels 1 & 2 workshop September 8th, 1000 – 1600 At Wild Geese Fitness, Dublin 2 Details HERE.

and if you are a coach,  this is for you: Kettlebell Instructor Training Certification: October 5th & 6th, 0900 – 1700 both days. Details HERE

Kettlebell & Bodyweight Training Tramore Tactical Fitness, Waterford Sat 9th November Details Here

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